Where the Wild Things Are

While holiday-ing, I’ve been swimming in the river out the front of the holiday house. Its a little area with sandy beach on two sides, a net and a rock wall on the other two. I swim parallel to the net, which is the deepest cross section, toward and away from the rock wall.

Its wonderful, I feel like I’m floating in space; the sky hovers above me like a massive blue planet curving upwards on all sides. Thousands of tiny crabs scuttle and swarm on the banks of the river, each group behaving as one individual entity. The birds sit in the trees flap brightly colored wings that catch the eye and sing songs I’ve never heard before.

If I ever had the chance to visit another planet I would imagine that the experience would be very similar.

But its because of all these new strange things that I have developed a very unusual fear; I can never bring myself to swim within three meters of the rock wall. It looms in front when I swim towards it, and lingers behind when I swim away. It menaces me from the moment I step into the water until the moment I leave.

The fear of course, is completely absurd, I know that the scariest thing on that wall are the barnacles, and the only thing that could cause any harm would be little crab claws. I have seen people sit on it happily without any sign of a giant pink tentacle rising out of the water and snatching them by their ankles then devouring them in a shower of screams, blood and bones. This fear goes completely beyond rational thought.

The only reason that I can give for this fear is that Im in a strange place and my mind is on the alert and ready for anything; even a eight foot crab with a set of grumpy poisonous snakes instead of claws.

I suppose that the appropriate quote would be “nothing to fear but fear itself”, but thats the rational bit talking again. So ‘cause Im a tad bored of my voice of reason, and that Im on holiday, Im just going to trust my irrational instincts and believe that there is some great monster of the deep hiding down there. Maybe if I bring it cookies it’ll be my friend.

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